Oct 20, 2013, 6:37 AM EDT
Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, October 20, the day the Washington Redskins play the Chicago Bears at FedEx Field.
How likely is a turnaround?
When the Redskins fell to three games under .500 last year, it appeared that they were on their way down and out. After going 3-3 in their first six games, the Redskins lost three in a row. They actually looked good in losing to the Giants with Robert Griffin III putting on a show including a TD pass to Santana Moss that put the Redskins ahead in the late going. But an Eli Manning bomb to Victor Cruz in the final two minutes gave the Giants the win.
Things went downhill from there. Their 27-17 loss to the Steelers was their worst game of the season to that point. They topped it or, rather, bottomed it the next week in a 24-21 home loss to the 1-6 Panthers in a game that was not as close as the final score indicated. That dropped the Redskins to 3-6 and prompted Mike Shanahan to talk about players performing to show they want to be with the team in the future. The slump made the team’s seven-game winning streak to take the division title seem all the more unlikely.
How likely does a turnaround for the 2013 Redskins seem right now? In some ways it seems like they have a steeper hill to climb. Last year after nine games the Redskins at least knew that they could hang their hat on Alfred Morris pounding out some rushing yards and Griffin being able to work some magic. This year both Morris and Griffin have had their moments but consistency has eluded them.
But if you look at the last three games, it does look like this team is closer to putting it together when compared to the 2012 bunch. They had their chances against the Lions, posted an “a-win-is-a-win” win over the Matt Flynn-led Raiders and if they could have tackled Dwayne Harris they would have been right with the Cowboys until the end.
With a trip to Denver looming a week from today, starting a winning streak against the Bears is unlikely. But other than the meeting with Peyton Manning and company it seems like Washington can be competitive in its remaining games. That is, of course, if the defense continues its improvement, the special teams don’t make killer mistakes, and the offense can score some first-half touchdowns.
Those are some big ifs but not really any bigger than the team faced last year. That doesn’t mean a playoff run is imminent but it does mean that there is a chance.
In case you missed it
- Is leadership an issue on special teams?
- Redskins lose Kehl, Sundberg for the season
- A tough road ahead for the Redskins
- Snap counts: Fletcher back to full-time duty
- Monday six pack: Where was Reed in the second half?
- Redskins rack up yards, not points
- Redskins sign three, release Pugh
- Shanahan says Amerson’s concussion was avoidable
- Fan questions: Why not more hurry-up offense?
- Shanahan praises the defense
- Redskins can’t look down the road
- Amerson, Neild limited in practice
- Nelson “thankful” for opportunity
- Don’t look for any major shakeups with the Redskins
- First look at Redskins-Bears
- Cutler says Hall is “another player”
- Haslett wants more takeaways
- Cowboys LB fined for hit on Amerson
- Trestman thinks Griffin is as good as ever
- Haslett praises D-Hall but wants more consistency
- Griffin happy to take hits in exchange for flags
- State of the Redskins after five games
- Special teams still adjusting
- Preview: Can Redskins put it together?
- Amerson looks set to play on Sunday
- 5 keys + a prediction: Can Forbath regain his 2012 form?
- Helu won’t take anything for granted
- Griffin explains comments on penalties
Follow Us On Twitter
- Snyder: Redskins have 'started the process' of planning new stadium
- Decision made on Josh Gordon suspension
- Backup battles to be settled vs. Bucs
- Predicting the Redskins' 53 -- Defense
- Torrey Smith on if Brandon Meriweather should be suspended
- Thomas' foot could be a bigger issue than the Meriweather suspension
- Predicting the Redskins' 53 -- Offense
- No surprise: Gruden confirms starters will sit vs. Bucs
- Pierre Garçon joins fight to help young fan (VIDEO)
- Where do Redskins turn after Meriweather suspension? (VIDEO)